View Full Version : vertical bellows compression

Colin Graham
01-15-2007, 01:49 PM
With the extreme taper of most banquet camera bellows, how do you get around bellows vignetting when using wide lenses in vertical orientation? I have a fujinon 250 with great coverage, but if I use more than a little front rise, there so much serpentine compression on the bellows that it clips the optical path. I'm tempted to make a bag bellows but that just seems goofy-it's a ten inch lens for *sake. Has anyone come up with a universal bellows of any kind or know of a workaround?

01-15-2007, 02:31 PM
Have you tried a recessed lens board?

01-15-2007, 02:53 PM
The C1 8x has a ring attached to the bellows with a piece of bellows cloth that can be put over a screw that is in the top center of the front standard. It holds the front of the bellows up to the front of the camera when the camera is using shorter lenses to prevent bellows sag.

Colin Graham
01-15-2007, 04:19 PM
Yeah, I've tried these, I appreciate it though.

01-15-2007, 08:50 PM

Can you roll-up a towel or sweatshirt and slide it between the bellows and frame? or would that crunch it too much the other direction?

just a thought.

Colin Graham
01-15-2007, 10:36 PM
Hey, that's a thought. I've been removing the back and sort of punching-out the bellows, might as well stuff something in there to keep it out of the way. Thanks phfitz. Probably wreck the bellows eventually, but I think my main problem is I made the bellows too long, and will have to make a shorter more practical one.

Colin Graham
01-17-2007, 10:12 AM
As an update I made a shorter bellows and any advantage of shorter length is negated by steeper taper, so that didn't work. I guess on 5x12, 250mm is fairly wide the more I think about it, so I'll probably end up making a bag bellows just to have for the more extreme vertical shots. It'll be a hell of a bag, though! :-]

Colin Graham
01-17-2007, 10:40 PM
Ok, try not to laugh. I think it might possibly run amok but it should work, I ran out of daylight before I could test it for leaks. Here's a before shot showing the problem and a shot of the bag from beyond.

01-18-2007, 09:44 AM
Would a conventional bellows with larger pleats help to alleviate the problem?

Colin Graham
01-18-2007, 06:59 PM
Possibly, but at this point if I never have to make a $#% bellows again it'll suit me just fine. I was hoping to hear from some banquet shooters to see if they have this problem at all...but I think it might be my own personal rain cloud. Possibly it only applies to the 'mini'-banquet formats that can use shorter lenses. But thanks for the suggestion, I do appreciate it.

Colin Graham
10-12-2007, 10:19 AM
Would a conventional bellows with larger pleats help to alleviate the problem?

Finally got around to trying this and it did the trick. Thanks very much Will! I'd been hung up on making smallish (1" combined) pleats from making 4x5s and I just couldn't let go. Tried 1 3/8" and it made all the difference.

10-12-2007, 10:26 AM
How about a hanger. You attach loops to the top of your bellows via bellows patching compound, then run a dowel or such from your front standard to the back through the loops, thus supporting the bellows from the top.

Andrew Moxom
10-12-2007, 10:27 AM
Colin, how about using a small strip of velcro like the Canham DLC's have on them. About halfway down, a velcro strip is glued to the top of the bellows and its mating piece onto the front standard that allows some pleats to be gathered together to eliminate bellows droop and image interference. Or, place a lens cap on it's side underneath the bellows between the bed and bellows. I've found that to work quite well.

Colin Graham
10-12-2007, 10:48 AM
I did include a cinching strap that hooks onto the front standard. My main problem had been too many small pleats, so it was too stiff racked in tight on vertical shots with front rise. Problem all solved, just wanted to thank Will. I appreciate the suggestions.